Mark Batson has produced for some of the biggest names in music, from Beyoncé to Dave Matthews Band to Eminem, earning producer and songwriter credits on records that have sold over 150 million physical copies. The Grammy-winning musician has today released his first ever solo record – I Want To See You Shining – a 12-track LP that could not be better suited for the current times.
I Want To See You Shining is a new age-inspired motivational album comprised of uplifting affirmations over atmospheric piano and synthesizers stylistically weaving spoken word and rap with the comfort of ASMR or a meditation session. These affirmations are intentional mantras meant to encourage the enlightenment of one’s highest sense of self, and to instill self-directed confidence and positivity in the listener. At a time of tremendous strife, with a burgeoning mental health crisis fueled by social movements against racialized police violence, compounded by the ongoing pandemic and ever-present effects of climate change, Mark is fulfilling a personal sense of responsibility to provide for the collective community. Having helped guide musicians from all walks of life to create some of their most legendary records, Mark now offers himself to the listener with a belief in the strength and resolve of the human spirit.
Mark Batson first began writing and sharing his holistic health recordings two years ago when a friend asked him to create a meditation recording about success. After sharing the work to positive reception among close friends, Batson released the original mediation and new reflections on mastering anxiety, on his personal YouTube channel, drawing some 50k views. The initial reception proved an appetite for this content in the larger community, undoubtedly accentuated into today’s current climate.
“We must ask, what does a person do when the majority of the collective is feeling anxiety, despair and anguish? If there is one thing we have learned during these times, is how programmable and hackable the human spirit is.
During the spring of 2020, I went into my studio to create a sonic landscape meant to counter the negativity that was flooding the atmosphere and airwaves. These 12 recordings, meant to boost your mood, vibe, consciousness and mental well-being is the result. The goal, while listening, is to elevate your mind to a higher level of being. They worked for me, and I hope they will for you.”
I Want To See You Shining is accompanied by an informational mental health e-book, co-authored by Mark and renowned psychologist, Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble. The album and initiative more broadly has thus far received enthusiastic support from leading mental health organizations such as Kenneth Cole Mental Health Coalition (23 leading mental health organizations), Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble, AAKOMA Project, among others.
“It’s been very fulfilling and freeing,” Batson says of his forthcoming “first alone project,” which is sonically influenced by hip-hop’s cadence as well as other experimental sounds performed by Batson in his recording studio. “Physically and mentally, I’m in better condition than ever,” he notes of his own affirmational journey. “I’ve been working my way through these times like everyone else, but affirmations and music have kept me grounded and progressive. I feel like I’m introducing myself to the world for the first time right now.”
I Want To See You Shining is available on all streaming platforms and available for purchase on the iTunes store as well as Mark’s website.